The Science of Task Delegation: How to Get More Done in Less Time

July 23, 2022

Effective time management entails exercising control over the activities and amount of time required, frequently accomplished by delegating tasks to others. Controlling how much time is spent on the right jobs can help you be more productive. Time Management Skills are crucial for all work to be performed on time in the company.

Time management techniques reduce managerial stress and enable more effective output. In business, time is essential; therefore, it’s critical to utilize it wisely. A strong leader is necessary for managers and administrators, not by doing all the work yourself but by supporting your team and being available when they need you.

ceo handed off her delegation of tasks

Delegation of tasks may seem simple, and those who are good at it often make it seem that way, but successful delegation calls on a lot of trusts, communication, and cooperation. However, your team benefits if you master and execute the delegation process well. This blog post will explore the science of delegation and how you can use it to your advantage!

Why Is It Important to Delegate?

As an effective leader, you can’t and shouldn’t do everything yourself; therefore, delegation is crucial. Your staff will be more empowered by delegation, and it will also foster trust and professional growth.

Additionally, it teaches leaders how to choose the most qualified to take on particular jobs or essential projects. Of course, assigning responsibilities to others can reduce your workload.

One benefit is that those who work for you will be able to learn new skills and expand their knowledge, preparing them for future roles with greater responsibility.

Delegation can also serve as a strong indication of your regard for and confidence in your employees’ judgment. Employee dedication to their work, their organization, and especially their bosses is generally higher when they feel trusted and valued.

Suppose you’re a team leader, an entrepreneur, or in a comparable power position. In that case, delegation will be crucial to maximizing your output and maintaining your sanity when working under pressure or with a heavy workload.

The issue is that many business owners and leaders are unable to delegate effectively or unwilling to do so unless necessary. Like any other talent, a delegation of work can be learned and developed over time.

Delegation can also serve as a strong indication of your regard for and confidence in your employees’ judgment. Employee dedication to their work, their organization, and especially their bosses is generally higher when they feel trusted and valued.

In the workplace, delegation is giving someone else tasks to accomplish to finish a stated job, project, or procedure.

Every company and region of the world uses delegation. Whenever groups of individuals work together on projects, whether in the public or private sector, some delegation will take place to synchronize workloads and streamline timelines.

Why is it crucial to improve your delegation techniques and become a better delegator? It is a must in your professional life to communicate assignments and explain the reasons outlined in the description above.

However, the interpersonal dynamics used when delegating work are not as simple. When done correctly, you enable your staff to operate at peak efficiency and wellbeing. Things aren’t so pretty when they’re done incorrectly.

Honor Everyone’s Time

Effective delegation shortens emails, keeps video and conference calls on schedule, and only includes the necessary parties in loops during meetings. People who use it create communication environments that are far more effective and respect employees’ time.

supervisor mastered her delegation skills

Today, it would not be easy to find someone who doesn’t value their time as one of their most valuable commodities. Time is respected by the more effective delegation in any setting, communicating with precision, brevity, and purpose.

Reduce Micromanaging

One of the most prevalent inappropriate managerial behaviors that employees encounter is micromanaging. These so-called “helicopter” managers micromanage for a variety of reasons. Some people are firmly convinced that for something to be done correctly, they must do it themselves.

Others might be inexperienced in managerial roles and be completely oblivious that they are micromanaging. Others engage in micromanagement for less altruistic purposes, mistrusting the skills and time managing of their staff members, giving only their ideas a top priority, or looking for opportunities to claim credit for others’ work.

Delegation equips direct subordinates with the knowledge and resources they need to complete their work before letting them operate independently.

Decrease Conflicts

An effective delegation offers all the knowledge and specifics required for a given delegated task or project management. Additionally, it provides project benchmarks and guarantees that expectations are in line from the start, without surprises or misunderstandings.

handing off the delegated task

As a result, teams struggle to fill in the process gaps left by their management with less internal and external disagreement. Everyone is aware of their responsibilities inside a given task and when they must complete them by removing frictional process limbos.

Uphold Employee Engagement

Effective delegation promotes and strengthens employee buy-in. According to research, managers that assign routine, goal-oriented, or value-adding tasks to their staff members improve the likelihood that the job will be of a higher caliber.

Giving direct reports meaningful work is also an essential strategy for mentoring staff members, developing their skill sets, highlighting their inherent abilities, and making them feel indispensable.

Maintain the Organizational Architecture

Delegation done well keeps communication processes compatible with the entire organizational structure. It enables staff members to know who to speak with about issues or queries, where to go, and how to be more productive.

Significant Reasons Why Leaders Won’t Delegate

Most of the time, the causes of the lousy delegation are more complex. Some leaders struggle with delegation because they are control-freaks who can’t let go of the reigns of power.

Lack of Bandwidth

Low bandwidth is a common cause of leadership failure in the delegation. Leaders cannot raise their heads in time to determine what has to be done and who can do it.

project management tool

When they delegate tasks, they frequently do it at the wrong level or without clear instructions since they don’t have a clear line of sight. Their attempts at delegation are therefore more likely to fail.

They Are Too Scared to Fail

Leaders afraid of failing may cling to their tasks and refuse to delegate tasks effectively. To be sure that the job is completed to the appropriate standard, they believe they must assume leadership and directly deliver the assignment.

Some bosses say, “Do it yourself if you want it done right.” That’s a productivity trap. When managers behave this way, they end up “hoarding” their work and refusing to share it with their workforce.

Lack of Trust in Their Team Members

Many bosses find it difficult to believe in their employees. You’re not necessarily wrong if you don’t believe in your team. But if you want to provide duties to your team members, you must address those trust difficulties.

Harvard business school

What you want to prevent is making your team’s lack of trust become a self-fulfilling prophecy, where you believe it, and they start to believe it.

Lack of Know-How

The lack of expertise is the actual issue for certain executives. They can perhaps be unpracticed. They could not have learned how to delegate effectively (e.g., never had a good role model demonstrating this capacity).

Fear of Reputation Risk

Some managers refrain from delegating work out of concern about their reputation. Some executives worry that assigning tasks to team members would be interpreted as a sign of laziness or downloading work. Some team leaders fear that team members’ efforts won’t meet their standards.

When They Love the Detail

Some folks adore working on the details. Many managers or senior executives enjoy obsessing over minor details rather than considering the strategic aspects of their positions.

professional development

Being constantly preoccupied with the details has the drawback of making it very tough to let go. You’ll find it harder to delegate responsibility once you start obsessing over the little things someone else should be thinking.

Not Getting Credit

Everyone relishes occasionally basking in well-deserved acclaim. In fact, for some people, receiving praise is what keeps them going and motivates them. A great leader, however, is prepared to share the glory.

It exhibits humility, a sense of teamwork, and a servant-leadership style of leadership. You are genuinely communicating that you are more important than the potential team you have gathered around yourself when you cease releasing others to lead, manage, or “do” because you desire the pack on the back.

Delegated Out of a Job

Now and again, leaders could worry that they might lose their jobs if they delegate their responsibilities. First, perhaps that is accurate.

You can only presume that it’s for the best if that is the case. It may be time to follow the Lord’s guidance for you and the organization if others can perform your task more effectively.

delegation occurs

Second, and this is more likely to be the case, you frequently demonstrate your value to your bosses if you can successfully delegate work and leadership to others. Delegators are leaders that excellent organizational leaders never want to lose.

Losing The Tasks I Love

This is a trickier justification for not delegating work. On the one hand, it may be selfish for leaders to reserve their essential tasks.

Often, for themselves and the team to advance, leaders must give up.

On the other hand, they may enjoy performing certain activities since they do them naturally. A person is not automatically called to lead the team or run the department just because they are a good sales representative, assistant pastor, or secretary.

Inability to Mentor and Train Team

Finally, some leaders don’t do an excellent job with training. Despite being incredibly talented, they have trouble helping their team members become competent.

How to Determine When to Delegate

The fact that leaders are unsure of which specific tasks they should and shouldn’t be delegating is another major obstacle to delegation. There are probably particular tasks you should handle yourself and tasks you should delegate in every manager’s job, especially for novice managers.

Performing an audit of your tasks using the guidelines below will help you determine which of them can be assigned to someone else:

  • Tiny: Tiny jobs are minute tasks that can be finished quickly but accumulate over time. An assistant may arrange meetings, reserve flights for professional travel, or clear your inbox of spam and marketing communications.
  • Tedious: Mindless chores, like uploading lead information from your marketing automation program to your CRM, are considered tedious tasks. Tedious chores are simple to delegate and don’t require much talent.
  • Time-consuming: Time-consuming tasks allow dividing the work into smaller segments and assigning parts to other members. If you frequently complete time-consuming work, look for chances to delegate aspects of it to others.
team mate discussing the desired outcome
  • Teachable: Do you have any tackle tasks you could teach someone else to accomplish without much difficulty? A task is a good candidate for delegation if it is teachable and does not require knowledge you possess alone.
  • Terrible: You may lack design abilities, and it takes you six times as long as a professional designer to make the visuals for your blog entries. Assigning that duty to someone with the necessary skills to complete it efficiently is preferable.
  • Time-sensitive: Perhaps it would be best to handle every duty associated with a time-sensitive project, but if you won’t have enough time to do it that way, it’s time to find ways to assign some of that task to other team members.

You might also want to consider passing down things that you enjoy performing but are no longer required to undertake for your job.

It’s time to delegate and train the person who will carry out those responsibilities for you if you recently assumed a leadership position and have pet projects from your time as an individual contributor.

How to Delegate Tasks Effectively

1. Learn to Let Go

Inability to let go of their work is the main issue that most new bosses and leaders encounter. Sometimes they are so committed to doing their work that they won’t accept assistance from any team member.

Other times, they worry that no one else possesses the knowledge or skills required to complete the task successfully. Whatever the situation, learning to let go should be your top goal. Delegate only the most minor responsibilities first, then gradually work your way up.

Improve trust between you and your coworkers by getting to know your team better. If you want your team to succeed, start small and realize that eventually, you will have to let go of your task.

2. Establish a Firm Priority System

Start creating a task prioritizing system as part of the letting process. Create at least five categories based on the amount of effort and skill required for a job, understanding that this system will change depending on your experience, industry, and the tasks you often manage.

Tasks in the lowest skill categories can be delegated to others, while those in the highest ones should be kept on your plate.

Inability to let go of their work is the main issue that most new bosses and leaders encounter. Sometimes they are so committed to doing their work that they won’t accept assistance from any team member.

delegated work

You should be able to choose which activities to delegate based on their level of work. For instance, assigning someone else the responsibility for a task that requires a lot of effort but little expertise will free up your time.

You can better comprehend the nature of your responsibilities and assign them to others if you establish a strict prioritization system.

3. Play to Your Workers’ Strengths

It would be best to become an adept leader by getting to know your team members’ quirks. Every person has strengths and limitations, as well as a current and potential variety of talents that you should be aware of.

Consider your team while delegating, and provide the assignment to the person with the most applicable talents. It might sound like a no-brainer, but far too often, bosses assign tasks to whoever is most accessible or has the least workload.

Also crucial is maintaining consistency. For instance, giving the same person the same kind of work over time will improve that person’s aptitude for that work.

4. Always Include Instructions

Even if the procedure for the task seems apparent to you, be sure to send instructions with every assignment. Include any particular instructions you have for how the work should be completed. Make sure everyone knows about any deadlines or milestones you have to meet.

delegated tasks

You can avoid most communication breakdowns by providing clear directions up front, enabling your responsibilities to be completed successfully. It’s a proactive approach that you and your staff will value.

5. Don’t Be Afraid to Teach New Skills

A task on your to-do list can still be delegated even if someone on your team lacks the skills to do it. Don’t be hesitant to teach as part of the delegating process because most abilities can be learned, though some more readily than others.

Consider it an investment even if assigning your first few duties will take longer than it would save you (as you’ll need to train your chosen employee). By imparting those skills, you’ll pave the way for future delegation of all comparable tasks to that person, ultimately saving more time than you did during instruction.

6. Trust, but Verify

Once a task has been assigned, put your teammate’s execution of it in their capable hands. It will enable the individual to approach the work however they feel is most effective.

right person

Nevertheless, don’t be reluctant to intervene to ensure that the task proceeds as intended. For instance, if you gave a student an assignment a week ago that is due tomorrow, you can trust that they are on top of things, but you should still send a quick confirmation email to ensure they aren’t having any problems.

Doing this may increase respect and trust among your team members and eliminate communication or comprehension gaps.

Conclusion: How Delegation May Help You Get More Done in Less Time

Consider attempting a relay race all by yourself. That wouldn’t be very effective. Because it’s a team event, everyone gets to pass the baton and shoulder the load. Even the team leader knows how crucial it is to ensure everyone does their job. Without delegation of tasks, a relay race is just a losing endeavor.

maintain control

Effectively Delegating requires a delicate balance, which is no easy task. Many professionals struggle to manage team ownership throughout their career phases without taking control of the teams or projects. Although there is an understandable tug-of-war, time may resolve it, effort, and the patient’s desire to try some new things.

These best practices for delegation use organizational and social psychology to help you divide work among your team more efficiently while also introducing more critical project management and process changes.

About the author: Joe Silk -

Joseph is a freelance writer who focuses on sharing our Startup Oasis team's abundant knowledge with the rest of the world. Our team has no secret for anything to do with Startups, SaaS software firms, technology, Web and mobile apps, IoT, UI/UX Design. View on Linkedin